For more than 50 years, infants in the Greater Cleveland area have been dying at a rate similar to many third-world countries. First Year Cleveland wants to change that. We are a community movement committed to ensuring that every baby born in Cuyahoga County will celebrate their first birthday.
Our 11 community-wide action teams are poised to tackle the challenges that contribute to infant mortality. We focus on addressing racial disparities, decreasing extreme prematurity and eliminating sleep-related deaths — proven strategies aimed to reduce (and sustain a low number of) infant deaths for decades to come.
Alarmed by what many considered an unsolvable problem, leaders representing every sector of the community came together in early 2016 and established First Year Cleveland to develop an effective, comprehensive and sustainable approach to solving infant mortality in our area.
Early efforts have been encouraging — proving that success is possible — but much more needs to be done to keep our babies alive and healthy so they can reach their first birthday. Join us as we work together to reach the national goal set by the CDC for infant mortality by 2020.
Learn more about this community collaboration of expectant parents, parents, community leaders, philanthropic organizations, government entities, health providers, educational institutions, nonprofits, faith-based and business entities in our Strategic Plan, and the video below.
First Year Cleveland’s mission is to mobilize the community through partnerships and a unified strategy to reduce infant deaths including racial disparities.
Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, First Year Cleveland’s fiscal agent, provides office space, legal, and human resources services at no cost.
Funders include Ohio Department of Medicaid, Ohio Department of Health including Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Ohio Equity Institute, Cuyahoga County, County Executive Armond Budish and Cuyahoga County Council, City of Cleveland, Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson, and Cleveland City Council.